North Korean state media has called for a “great revolution” in the literary arts, citing growing fears about “antisocialist and non-socialist phenomena” in the region.
According to the Korean Workers’ Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun, the current “turbulent reality” necessitates “passionate and vibrant” literary arts. The announcement comes a week after the regime’s Youth League held its 10th congress.
Non-socialist and anti-socialist influences are most likely references to information transfers from outside North Korea’s borders, like South Korea. Defectors in the South have said that seeing South Korean television shows inspired them to flee the North.
When Kim Jong Un was not present, the topic of rising “anti-socialism” may have overshadowed the meeting last week.
At the congress, a North Korean official said that a “more intensive” cultural offensive is needed to “wipe out antisocial and non-socialist phenomena” and “establish a socialist way of life.”
The statement comes after Pyongyang enacted a law that could further punish its citizens for facilitating the flow of outside information into the country.
The Rodong said Wednesday that the nation faces a “new turning point in the revolution” for the “struggle against antisocialism and non-socialism.” The nation must innovate literature, film, including documentaries, and compose songs that “anyone can sing.”
“It is imperative that the literary arts leads the times and inspires the masses,” the North Korean newspaper said. “The revolutionary literary arts exert unparalleled power in pushing the people toward heroic struggle.”
In a different post, state media emphasised the importance of “reflecting” on the “spirit of struggle” of the past.
North Koreans must recall the “Chollima” movement of the 1950s, when workers were mobilised to factories and farms out of patriotic obligation to help rebuild the nation after the 1950-53 Korean War, according to state media.
Chollima is a horse that means “thousand-li” During a time when North Koreans toiled for no material gain under Kim Il Sung, the movement evoked the influence of supernatural flying horses from East Asian mythology.